Toughest test in Europe yet.
Chelsea travel to Amsterdam to take on Dutch champions Ajax for matchday 3 of the group stage. Ajax lead the group with two wins in two while Chelsea are 3rd with 3 points. Ajax were brilliant last year in the Champions League beating Juventus, and Real Madrid on their way to the semi-final’s where they unluckily and perhaps undeservingly lost to Tottenham. Ajax have lost some key players from last season with De Ligt moving to Juventus while De Jong has left for Barcelona but several of the key players like Ziyech, Tadic and a few others are still at Ajax. Ajax have won both their games in the Eredivisie since beating Valencia. Under Ten Hag they continue to develop and promote their youth as they have done for several years now and Chelsea in their current infancy under Lampard are looking to do the same.
Chelsea started the Champions League season with a loss but have since beaten Lille away from home and sit 3rd. Chelsea beat Southampton the following weekend and this last weekend won against Newcastle at home. Chelsea have done well away from home this season as opposed to at Stamford Bridge where the wins have been a bit more laboured. Ajax have a similar style to Chelsea and this should be a good and entertaining game of football between two youthful teams.
Chelsea Team Preview
Chelsea will be without Rudiger, Kante, Barkley, and Pedro for this game as Rudiger and Kante continue to recover while Barkley is out due to an ankle injury. The reason for Pedro being left out is unknown. I expect Lampard could select a 3-4-3 formation with Azpilicueta, Zouma, and Tomori making up the back three and Kepa in goal. Emerson, and Reece James could start as the full backs with Jorginho and Kovacic running the midfield. Hudson-Odoi, Tammy, and Pulisic could start up front for Chelsea. The formation allows us to change if need be while also helping us control the midfield.
Starting XI Prediction
A tough game is expected but it should be an entertaining one and a good test for Lampard and the team. Three points are necessary to stand a chance at topping the group and so we aim for the win as always. COME ON YOU BLUES!!!